National Trust of Guyana

Red House (Cheddi Jagan Research Center)

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Location: Kingston, Georgetown

Classification: Governmental

Period/ Year Built: 19th century

Historical Background / Description:

Located at Lots 65-67 High Street, Kingston, Georgetown is the building known as Red House. Red House is also known as Kamana Court and, more recently, the Cheddi Jagan Research Centre (CJRC) which is currently housed at the location. The building is a 19th century colonial structure and once housed the Colonial Secretaries from 1925-1953. One of its former residents was Sir Eustace Woolford, a Speaker of the Legislature of British Guiana. 

In 1961, the building became the Official Residence of the Premier of British Guiana, the title held by Dr. Cheddi Jagan from 1961-1964. From 1965 to the 1990s, the edifice was used to house a number of government agencies such as, the Department of External Affairs and the Public Service Ministry (Training Division). In 1972, it was named Kamana Court during the Non-Aligned Nations meeting held at the Umana Yana, a short distance away. 

In the early 1990s, the building was considered dilapidated and was listed to be demolished by the Georgetown Mayor and City Council. However, in 1997, the Barama Company undertook the initiative to have the structure rehabilitated; the Cheddi Jagan Research Centre would later move into the building. Some features of this timber (pitch-pine) building include its red coated wallaba shingles, tower, balconies and Demerara windows. Red House was gazetted as a National Monument in April, 2001.